Joseph Williams

Birth Name: Joseph Stanley Williams

Place of Birth: Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: September 1, 1960

Ethnicity: Irish, English, 1/16th French-Canadian, more distant German, Dutch, and Welsh

Joseph Williams is an American singer, songwriter, and film score composer. He is the lead singer of rock band Toto. The band’s members also include/have included Bobby Kimball, Steve Lukather, David Paich, Jeff Porcaro, Mike Porcaro, and Steve Porcaro.

Joseph is the son of actress and singer Barbara Ruick (born Barbara Joan Ruick) and iconic composer, conductor, pianist, and trombonist John Williams (John Towner Williams). He is the grandson of jazz drummer and percussionist Johnny Williams, actor Melville Ruick, and character actress and acting coach Lurene Tuttle. Joseph is married to Amy Troyer-Williams, with whom he has three children.

Joseph’s paternal grandfather was Johnny Williams (born John Francis Nagle, the son of Thomas Michael Nagle and Katharine/Katherine Carolina “Katie” Duffy). Johnny was born in Watertown, Massachusetts, to parents who ran a department store in Bangor, Maine. Johnny took on the surname of his own stepfather Henry D. Williams; Henry was prominent in politics in Bangor, and was chairman of the police examining board. Joseph’s grandfather Johnny Williams played with the Raymond Scott Quintet. Joseph’s great-grandfather Thomas was born in Bath, Maine, to Irish parents, Richard Nagle and Hanora/Honora. Katharine was also born in Bath, the daughter of Frank Duffy and Margaret Mullen, both of whom were also the children of Irish parents.

Joseph’s paternal grandmother was Esther Towner (the daughter of David John Towner and Ada B. Hennessy/Hennesey/Hennessey). Esther was born in Massachusetts, to Canadian parents. David was the son of David Towner, who had Colonial American roots, and of Emillie Robitaille/Robitalle, who was likely French-Canadian. Ada likely had Irish ancestry.

Joseph’s maternal grandfather was Melville Hughes Ruick (the son of Norman Melville Ruick and Amanda Deborah Hughes). Melville was born in Boise, Idaho. Norman was the son of William Orson Rewick and Temperance Coleman Hutchinson. Amanda was the daughter of Conrad Kurtz Hughes and Adocia Purcell.

Joseph’s maternal grandmother was Lurene “Susie” Tuttle (the daughter of Clair Vivian/Vivien Tuttle and Verna Sylvia Long). Lurene was born in Pleasant Lake, Indiana, and appeared on radio and in films and television. Clair was a performer in minstrel shows, and then a station agent for a railroad. He was the son of Francis Frank Marion Tuttle, who managed an opera house and taught drama, and of Dora L. Lower. Verna was the daughter of Albert William Long and Susie Ingalls.

Sources: Genealogy of Joseph Williams –

Birth record of Joseph’s paternal grandfather, Johnny Williams/John Francis Nagle –

Joseph’s paternal great-grandfather, Thomas Michael Nagle, on the 1880 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Joseph’s paternal step-great-grandfather, Henry D. Williams –

Joseph’s paternal great-grandmother, Katharine/Katherine Carolina “Katie” Duffy, on the 1880 U.S. Census –

Joseph’s paternal grandmother, Esther Towner, on the 1910 U.S. Census –
Esther Towner on the 1920 U.S. Census –

Genealogy of Joseph’s mother –

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.